Christine Cox

Posts tagged ‘Bookbinding’

Cleaning a Dried Out Glue Brush

Bookbinding: Cleaning a Dried Out Glue Brush
(Previously published in The Muse zine)

I’ve heard it so many times, “I forgot to clean my brush after using PVA (synthetic adhesive). Now I have to throw the brush out.” No you don’t!

  • The first thing to try when your brush is stiff from glue is to simply soak the brush in a dish of cold water (hot water may expand the metal ferrule on your brush, causing the bristles to fall out — a great tip for painters too). Soak it for an hour or two (or overnight if you have a lot of adhesive to contend with). This will reactivate the PVA so that you can clean the brush normally. Once the adhesive is out, use a brush cleaner (a cake of brush-friendly soap in a deep jar) to get rid of any globs hiding in the bristles.
  • If soaking the brush in water doesn’t do the job and the bristles are still stiff, try this excellent technique.
    Put a little white vinegar (maybe a teaspoon or so) in a glass and then fill it to the bottom of the brush’s ferrule with hot water (I know, I know, I just told you not to use hot water, but we’re desperate here). Hot tap water is fine. Put the brush in and let it soak for about 30 seconds. It will come out soft and supple.
    Now you have a brush with vinegar (3% – 6% acetic acid) in it. Any binder worth her salt knows that one of the most important things about bookbinding for posterity is to keep the pH as neutral as possible. To neutralize the acid in your brush (raise the pH), dump the water/vinegar out of the glass, rinse the glass and refill it with cold water. This time add just a little baking soda (a base). Use the glue brush to stir the neutralizing solution for about 30 seconds, pressing the bristles against the side of the glass to open them up and let the baking soda into the interior bristles. Rinse the brush thoroughly, again opening it up and rinsing the inside. Your brush should be ready to go back to work.

Sponsored by:

Volcano Arts

www.volcanoarts.com

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6th Century: Biblioteca Capitolare

Books, Miniatures, Writing and Supports (Timeline Project)

Early 6th Century – The Biblioteca Capitolare is one of the world’s oldest libraries, established as a writing workshop for the cathedral. Probably the oldest European library still in existence. (Verona, Italy)

This post is part of an ongoing series on books, miniatures, writing and supports since the year 1. Please consider it a kick-start for your own private timeline and a springboard for further research. See my blog for the rest of the series.

Sponsored by:

Volcano Arts

www.volcanoarts.com

6th Century: Charters and Writs

Books, Miniatures, Writing and Supports (Timeline Project)charter

550 to 1066 – Fewer than 2,000 charters and writs survive from the Anglo-Saxon period (England)

This post is part of an ongoing series on books, miniatures, writing and supports since the year 1. Please consider it a kick-start for your own private timeline and a springboard for further research. See my blog for the rest of the series.

Sponsored by:

Bookbinding, Metalsmithing and Glass
We have the tools and supplies you need for your projects and classes
www.volcanoarts.com

Before the Codex: Bamboo Slips and Accordion Folds

Before the Codex, part 5
By Christine Cox

This is the last in a five-part series focusing on various writing supports, book forms and writing styles before the codex was invented.

Presented in this graphic and the others in the series are some of the writing supports and forms that preceded the codex. They’ve survived the ravages of time, war and tradition to come down to us.
(Click graphic to enlarge)

beforecodex-pg5

Sponsored by:

Bookbinding, Metalsmithing and Glass
We have the tools and supplies you need for your projects and classes
www.volcanoarts.com

Before the Codex: Mayan “Codex” and Palm Leaf Books

Before the Codex, part 4
By Christine Cox

This is the fourth in a five-part series focusing on various writing supports, book forms and writing styles before the codex was invented.

Presented in this graphic and the others in the series are some of the writing supports and forms that preceded the codex. They’ve survived the ravages of time, war and tradition to come down to us.
(Click graphic to enlarge)

Sponsored by:

Bookbinding, Metalsmithing and Glass
We have the tools and supplies you need for your projects and classes
www.volcanoarts.com

Before the Codex: Stone Carving

Before the Codex, part 1
By Christine Cox

This is the first in a five-part series focusing on various writing supports, book forms and writing styles before the codex was invented. From some time around 3100 BCE, humans have recorded important details about our lives, but it wasn’t until those clever Egyptians decided to fold papyrus in half, nest the folios and sew them together that the codex form was born in about the 1st century CE.

Presented in this graphic and those that will follow are some of the writing supports and forms that preceded the codex. They’ve survived the ravages of time, war and tradition to come down to us.
(Click graphic to enlarge)

Sponsored by:

Bookbinding, Metalsmithing and Glass
We have the tools and supplies you need for your projects and classes
www.volcanoarts.com

California Native Plants in Cloisonné

California Native Plants in Cloisonné
By Christine Cox

Recently, I finished these 4 kiln-fired cloisonné pieces, which are a little over an inch square each. They are made from sterling silver, fine silver and enamels, which are glass ground with different minerals for color. Each was fired repeatedly in a kiln at almost 1500°. It’s an exacting and exciting process with beautiful results.

The oldest cloisonné enamels — where extremely thin wires are used to make the shapes — are from the Middle East in the 2nd century BCE. From there the technique spread to the Byzantine Empire and to Russia. Spreading along the Silk Road, it found its way to China, Japan and beyond.

My pieces are destined to become bezel-set corners on a leather-covered wooden book which will house the letters of a California miner. He mined in and around our area of the California foothills and sent letters home for 3 years. The cloisonné pieces are in celebration of California’s beautiful native plants.

Check out the Wikipedia entry on Cloisonné to learn more.

Bookbinding, Metalsmithing and Glass
We have the tools and supplies you need for your projects and classes
www.volcanoarts.com

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